The battle for control of the House is now the biggest unanswered question of this year’s midterm elections after Democrats kept their narrow Senate majority.
Which party reaches the 218 seats necessary for a House majority will hinge on races in states with a large share of mail-in ballots — including California, where identifying winners in some races could take weeks, Oregon and Arizona.
Another high-profile contest remains too close to call: The Arizona governor’s race. Republican Kari Lake, the Donald Trump-supported election denier, is facing Democratic secretary of state Katie Hobbs, a defender of the state’s election process.
Democratic upset keeps narrow House majority hopes alive
Republicans appear to be slowly inching toward a slim majority, but Democrats’ hopes have not yet fully faded.
Republicans have won 211 of the 218 seats they’d need to take the majority, according to CNN projections, while Democrats have won 204, with 20 undecided as of Saturday evening.
Democrats scored a major victory in Washington’s Republican-leaning 3rd District, where on Saturday CNN projected that Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez would defeat Republican Joe Kent, who had aligned himself closely with former President Donald Trump.
Many of the other undecided races are in California, where counting mail-in ballots can take weeks and significant shifts can occur late in that process. Other states with large quantities of mail-in ballots, including Arizona and Oregon, also have undecided races.
Arizona governor’s race still undecided
The Arizona governor’s race between Lake, one of the most prominent election deniers on the ballot this year, and Hobbs, remains tight, with Hobbs clinging to a 34,000 vote lead as of late Saturday with an estimated 290,000 votes to be counted.
If she wins, Lake would be a rare Trump-supported election denier to win a competitive statewide race this year.
In an interview with CNN Saturday afternoon, Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates said that about 190,000 votes remain to be counted in Maricopa County.
He said he was confident that about 95% to 99% of those votes will be recorded by Tuesday. He said the county will continue to report about 85,000 votes per night until they are done.
Other races to keep an eye on:
In Alaska, the state’s at-large House seat and one of its Senate seats will hinge on ranked-choice results.
Democratic Rep. Mary Peltola, who won a special election this summer, is in a strong position to eclipse the 50% mark. But Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski faces a stiffer challenge from Republican Kelly Tshibaka, who is backed by Trump as part of his bid for retribution against Murkowski and others who for his impeachment after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol.
And in Los Angeles, Rep. Karen Bass on Saturday widened her lead over developer Rick Caruso in the mayoral race.
If elected, Bass would become the first woman and the first Black woman to lead America’s second-largest city.